From a Submariner's Perspective is a weekly column, written in response to the letters sent in to advice columnist "Prudie" at Each week, The Submariner responds to the letter writers in a way that author, Emily Yoffe, probably can't (but perhaps would like to...). Each entry is headed with a link to the orginal questions and Yoffe's answers. Enjoy!

Also, if you have questions that you'd like answered by The Submariner, or anyone here at "The Fly", just write to me at and I'll forward to the appropriate party/parties for an answer (or you can write to them directly via the e-mail addresses on their pages)! Once the answers are published, I'll drop you a note letting you know.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

...on SILs Miscarriage v. My Pregnancy (orig. 7/16/09) <---Original Prudie Questions Can Be Found There

Mornin’ shippers. Is it a good mornin’? No. It may have been, but then these letters... Holy shit, this is so not a day to be shooting water slugs. No, I’m not talking about friendly, slow-moving underwater snails. Let me briefly explain. On submarines, as practice, we fill an empty torpedo tube with water, go through all of the motions necessary to fire a torpedo (station tracking, open outer doors, pressurize, yaddah-yaddah), and then “fire” the water slug. It’s harmless, but keeps us well-practiced and sharp should we ever need to target the real deal. Well shippers, today’s letters deserve a full complement of MK48, wire-guided, blow your shit completely out of the water real-deal torpedoes. And I’m just the happy bastard to let ‘em rip...

LW#1: Me and my husband are completely fucking batshit crazy. Honestly (just ask SmagBoy1, he’ll tell you). Yet, we want to procreate, even though that means we will likely produce batshit crazy offspring. But that’s not even why I’m writing! My sister-in-law (that sorry bitch) recently had the gall to, a) get pregnant before me and my husband, and then, b) miscarry her baby, thereby preventing us from pursuing starting our own brood. I’m beside myself with the crazies. What should I do, Prudie? Okay, so, let me get this straight, you completely batshit crazy wench (and I call you that, knowing full well that I’m going to have to top it for LW#4, so don’t feel like you’re craziest person there is, but, you are pretty damned nuts), “...we were a little dismayed when my sister-in-law announced her pregnancy. I think we always assumed we'd have the first baby. We quickly got used to the idea, though, and were heartbroken for them when we learned about the miscarriage.” You were dismayed? You assumed you’d be the first?! You do know this works, right? The man puts his penis in the woman’s vagina and moves it fore and aft... Listen, it ain’t rocket science, sister! Then, you “quickly got used to the idea”? So, what, for awhile there you were plotting how you might cause her to miscarry (or just murder her altogether)?! But then got used to the fact that you won’t be first? Seriously?

Listen, here’s my advice. Get sterilized. Seriously. I mean it. You really are a completely batshit crazy wench and there are people out there who really shouldn’t be having kids. You and hubby are two of them. Consider it a favor to the rest of us. If you think I’m lying, simply ask yourself what in the entire fucking world the timing of your getting/being pregnant has to do with your sister’s miscarriage, in any way, shape or form. If you spend more than two seconds on mulling that over, or if your answer involves the words “baby showers” or “attention”, just make the hysterectomy appointment. Today. And a vasectomy appointment for hubby, too. We don’t want to take any chances.

LW#2: My buddy is getting married soon. He lives far away and it was a struggle for me to buy a plane ticket, but, considering what incredibly good friends we are, once he told me the date of the wedding, I did just that, pretty much breaking my wallet in the process. Now he tells me that I’m not invited because the bride wouldn’t budge on her guest list and apparently me and my plane ticket aren’t welcome at their soirée. What should I do? Last week, I spent too much effort trying to tie into my answers the phrase “grow a set of balls” or something similar. For you, I resurrect that mantra. Grow a set and tell your friend to piss off. Don’t be all namby pamby, just say, “Dude, you invited me, I bought tickets, now you uninvited me? Fuck off and die!” If you can’t get a refund for the tickets, fly out there anyway, rent a room you can afford, and enjoy the vacation. Take lots of photos. Who knows, you might get lucky and join the mile-high club or meet someone there. Don’t go near the wedding or the reception, etc., though. No need in engaging in that drama. Don’t even tell them you’re going.

And dude, this “really good friend” of yours? You might want to analyze that relationship. He doesn’t feel the same about it as you do. Clearly. Although, it’s interesting to me that you even expected a formal invitation? Was there something in the back of your mind, wondering if you’d really, truly been invited? If so, and I’m guessing it is so, since you even asked your buddy where your formal invitation was, you probably shouldn’t have bought those tickets in the first place. Just sayin’.

LW#3: My best friend is the most wonderful person in the world. I love her so much. Yaddah-yaddah. Yet, amazingly, after those first two sentences, I must share with you that she’s a controlling crazy woman to her sweet child and it’s bordering on abuse. What should I do? Okay, here’s another actual real concern in a letter. And you guys know that I hate to answer these. Why even send them in? Oh well. Listen, friends sometimes have to make tough choices. Here’s where you have to. You’ve got to tell your friend what you’re seeing. But, before you do, write down her behaviors that concern you, and the behaviors/reactions of her son that concern you. Make sure that you’re not exaggerating or projecting by looking at the list after you’ve not seen her for a few hours or days to ensure what you’ve written seems legitimate in the cold, analytical light of a few day’s distance. Can you enlist anyone else (your husband, boyfriend, other trusted friend) who knows her to review the list with you? That’s touchy, and I trust you won’t show it to anyone you can’t implicitly trust. Once verified, speak with her as Prudie says, using the list to keep you on track. Do not back down. If she leaves, send her the list. You may lose a friend (and be prepared to), but, you may help her child. And, too, know that kids can survive all sorts of horrors, so, even if you fail in rehabilitating your friend, her kiddo may still be fine. Let’s all hope so. All you can do is what you can do. Good luck.

LW#4: I’m a nitwit, bird-brained, sheepish lemming among sheepish lemmings, going along with the punishing of my grandfather for an indiscretion that had absolutely nothing to do with me whatsoever (or anyone in my family, actually, except my deceased grandmother who stayed with my grandfather, even though we idiot fucktard sheep-lemmings can’t seem to muster the same level of forgiveness, as if we somehow have a right to even judge). Wait, what was my dumbassed, stupid, arrogant, shitty, idiotic question again? Okay you fucking shit stain, get this straight. You have absolutely no right, whatsoever, to judge your grandfather. For anything. What happened between him and your grandma was their issue. Between them. It’s over. They moved on. Before you were born, even, you ass munch. After your grandmother’s death, your grand pop waited four years and then married someone. You say that if it wasn’t this woman you’d “possibly understand”? What?! You’d possibly understand what?! That your grandfather, a widower, got remarried?! You insolent little prick! How dare you! Holy shit, I can’t go on. Seriously, this guy/gal (and his entire family) takes the cake. Please, as I implored of LW#1, get sterilized. Please. I beg it of you. These kind of idiot genes need to be eliminated from the gene pool and contribution to that effort will be appreciated by all who will continue the species. Seriously. If not for us, for the children.

Okay shippers, that’s it for another week. Here’s hoping fair winds and following seas for ya! And, just know this, in the end, if you’ve ever been in the conning tower of a nearly 600 foot submarine, running on the surface in the South Pacific, with porpoises darting around in your forward wake, the sun setting to starboard and sweet breeze whipping up off the ocean and filling you full of life and mystery and thoughts of mermaids and white whales, this stuff won’t really bother you. Not really, because you’ll know it’ll be okay. I promise. :-)

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